Proprietress: Nancy Wilhelmson

My early years were spent in Skokie, Illinois where I lived until heading to college in Iowa for my bachelor’s degree in Fashion Merchandising, and then back to Illinois for postgraduate studies. I taught at Oregon State University for several years, then worked at Meier & Frank department stores in Portland, Oregon. In 1978 I moved to Waseca, Minnesota where I taught and held various administrative positions at the Waseca campus of the University of Minnesota until its closing in 1992. I spent a brief period on the Crookston campus, and then the following years until my retirement in 2014 in the Office of Human Resources at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities campus.

For many years my interests have centered on activities such as creating wearable art, gardening and collecting vintage clothing, accessories, linen, laces, buttons, cups & saucers, and an assortment of other collectibles. For a few years, I was a dealer and sold vintage and collectible items in an antique mall located in Stillwater, Minnesota. In the fall of 2014, I rekindled my “Teacups & Lace” business in a mall located in the historic Pearl Button Company building in downtown Lake City.

It was in August 2007, that I purchased the Octagon House Bed & Breakfast in Red Wing. My first couple of years of ownership was spent tending to the building’s exterior and having the carriage house renovated. For the last number of years work was done landscaping the property surrounding the house. I feel blessed to be able to serve as a conservator of this very unique historic home and find joy in sharing its history and beauty with others.